Data-Centric Digital Media & Email Marketing

Key Elements to a Successful Loyalty Program for Moms


Call me crazy, but I’m always thrilled to test drive a new loyalty program so that I can evaluate the consumer experience. I recently joined and have been actively participating in three new programs: Publix (a regional supermarket chain), MyLowe’s, and Target’s CartWheel shopping app. I’m always hoping to find some magical experience that makes me feel very special and appreciated as a customer.

There are a few essential elements that we always look for that, from our experience, can either make or break a loyalty program. Today’s consumers are sophisticated and expect customizable personalized experiences, so it’s key that the benefits and communication meet this expectation.

  1. Tangible Benefits – We always stress to our clients that their loyalty program needs to have tangible benefits that provide real value. Customers should really gain savings in either time or money by participating. Further, these benefits must be clearly communicated so that consumers are willing to take time and join. The MyLowe’s program is a good example, where Lowe’s has communicated the benefits that will help consumers save time and stay organized with materials purchased for their home repairs/projects.

    Loyalty Program Example - MyLowes

  2. Preference Center – Giving the consumer a choice as to the “how” and “when” to communicate with them makes quite the difference in email responsiveness. Ideally, a marketer will use a preference center to collect data from consumers, and then use the data to create relevant, customized experiences. It’s impossible to keep everyone on your email list engaged, so a preference center is a good option for those who want to unsubscribe.  This can give consumers an opportunity to either opt-out or change their preferences vs. reporting you as spam, which more often than not is the method that many consumers take to “opt-out”.

    Loyalty Program Feature - Preference Center

  3. Cadence and Type of Messaging – The results from a recent survey done by Hubspot on why people unsubscribe from email drive home the importance of sending the right number of emails at the right interval. Too often, I sign up for various email programs (especially from retailers) and get bombarded with daily emails. We always suggest being forthright with consumers and set accurate expectations by telling them how frequently emails will be sent and what they will entail. The more information that the consumer knows on what to expect, the more likely they will be interested in the long-haul.

    Chart - Reasons People Unsubscribe from Permission Emails

Ultimately I’ve been impressed with the MyLowe’s and Publix preference centers.  They both provide plenty of options to decide what I want to receive in regards to topics and how (email, postal, both).  I’m still playing with the Cartwheel app. So far, I think that it requires too much work for the savings that I’ve seen to date, but the jury is still out and I’m hopeful that it will improve with time.